All posts by Rufus Jones

Rufus Jones

About Rufus Jones

Rufus E. Jones Jr. is the co-founder and president of the James Weldon Johnson Foundation, which preserves “Five Acres,” the summer home of James Weldon Johnson and Grace Nail Johnson in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, and promotes educational, intellectual, and artistic works that reflect Johnson’s enduring contributions to American history and worldwide culture. A professional musician, singer/songwriter, recording artist, and bandleader in New Jersey and Massachusetts, Rufus is a native of Memphis, Tennessee, and holds a B.A. degree from Harvard University and an M.B.A. from the University of Tennessee.

“Along this way”

James Weldon Johnson at his writing cabin in western Massachusetts. Courtesy Yale Beinecke Library James Weldon Johnson Memorial Collection

In 2000, I was asked to co-produce the James Weldon Johnson Medal ceremony under the guidance and leadership of the late Dr. Sondra Kathryn Wilson at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem, New York. My wife, Jill Rosenberg Jones – the other producer – was my intended wife during that summer of 2000, and she was passionate about James Weldon Johnson – and because I intended to marry her, I thought it made sense for me to be passionate about James Weldon Johnson, too. Fast forward to June 2016, when we established the James Weldon Johnson Foundation to honor Johnson’s life through historic preservation and educational, intellectual, and artistic works that reflect the contemporary world and exemplify his enduring contributions to American history and worldwide culture. Continue reading “Along this way”